Category: Peru

PROSOYA

The little village of PROSOYA, a co-op project for boys, situated just a few kilometers from Huancabamba, about a twenty-minute walk along a dirt road that passes between lush green fields, and steep tree covered hillsides.  The project for girls is outside of Oxapampa.

PROSOYA is an ONG, or NGO, (Non-Governmental Organization) that was started by German settlers to the area some 150 years ago.  It is a self-sustaining school of 689 Hectares or 1,702 Acres that takes in students from all over Peru, but particularly ones that are in extreme poverty, or have come from other walks-of-life that need a helping hand to learn some Life Skills.

Skills learned at PROSOYA include; Agriculture, Carpentry, Fish Hatchery, Mechanic, Bakery, Beekeeping, and Restaurant, also housing is on site for students and some staff.

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Below is the main office, with a gift shop that sells the honey and coffee produced by PROSOYA.

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The restaurant where meals are prepared and served by and for the students.

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A bust of the PROSOYA founder.

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Some of the living quarters for students.

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Quito Quito Fruit – solanum quitoense, is a subtropical perennial plant from northwestern South America, and named after Quito, Ecuador that makes a very tasty juice or ice cream flavor. Below the fruit is new growth, and will turn an orange color when mature.

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Coffee production area.

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Plants for health, such as aola vera and other herbs.

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Area for growing fungus, mushrooms.

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Beekeeping.  The boxes are made in the carpentry shop.

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Fish hatcher with trout, below.

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One of the holding ponds packed with trout.

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Map of a nature trail that passes through the jungle to a lookout point.

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The dogs were eager to join me on the trail.

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The dense vegetation in the high jungle is a testament to the determination of the first German/Austrian settlers in the area.

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Huancabamba – Pasco, Peru

To travel from Oxapampa to Huancabamba it is necessary to first go to the taxi stand, and hire a driver to take you there.  It’s a fairly short drive winding through the countryside, but there could be delays from road construction, or the occasional cattle drive along the way.

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Below is the main park in the town of Huancabamba.  Following the road around past the gas station (left in the picture) will take you toward Pozuzo.

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An unmanned tourist information center next to the park.

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The little hostal/hotel where I stayed in Huancabamba.  It was very simple, and basic room, with a bed, small tv with just a few channels, and a bathroom with warm water.

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The bodega below the hostal, offering basic food, drink, and hardware supplies.

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A hillside planted with pine trees.  Pine makes the soil acidic and after a couple of plantings, the soil may become useless for farming.

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Huancabamba is a small, simple town as seen below from a distance.  Surrounded by moutains, valleys, lush jungle vegetation, and coffee plants.

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Coffee beans drying in the sun on a sports pad.

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Cage free; free-roaming chickens and roosters abound in the area.

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Taking a walk along the road from Huancabamba to Carolina, I happend upon a colorful butterfly.

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The two parakeets below were someone’s pets, sunning themselves on a ladder.

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Toys 4 Smiles

Posting about giving isn’t something I would normally do, but in order to spread the word about Toys4SmilesLasVegas.org a non-profit 501(c)(3), so I must.  Passing through the airport in Las Vegas on my way to Peru, and time to kill, I spent a few hours at the USO (United Service Organizations) while waiting to check my bags and process through security.

On a shelf, there were wooden toys, stuffed animals, and dolls that were donated for service members by local Las Vegas businesses.  The USO volunteer staff told me to help myself, but I didn’t have much room left in my bags, so I only took one wooden toy.  On Christmas Day, I headed to downtown Lima to cover the protests, and took the beautifuly hand crafted wooden toy with me to give away.

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He was shy and reserved.  I didn’t receive a smile in return, but I figure it’s not a normal occurance to have a gringo approach, and be handed a toy.  Nonetheless, I think he liked it, and should have many years of enjoyment out of it.

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Toys 4 Smiles Las Vegas.Org is in need of donations, weather it be with your time, materials, or cash.

Yanesha

While in Oxapampa, I was looking at the various tours Hostal Cruz offered and decided on Tsachopen (Sa Sho Pen) The Yanesha People are located near Oxapampa at the edge of the biosphere reserve in the high jungle of the Amazon.  The lady at the tour desk said there was a minimum of four people to do the tour, so I set out on my own, first with a moto-taxi, and then hired a taxi to take me there.  It turned out to only be a few kilometers away.

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All the pictures I had seen were of the Yanesha People in their traditional dress, back dropped by the lush vegetation of the Amazon.  I thought it was going to be like in Iquitos, meeting an ancient tribe out in the jungle – the real deal.  Pulling up in the taxi, there were a row of semi-modern houses, and a large bamboo structure for events where many of the Yanesha artisans sell their crafts.  The taxi driver and I were greeted at the door of one home by Charo, who was wearing jeans and a sweatshirt, then went back and changed into her traditional dress, before proceeding to show me her handicrafts.  It wasn’t what I was expecting, but an adventure nonetheless.

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Charo uses natural plants, coffee, and beans to create the natural colors in the clothing she makes.

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Below is a hand-made braclet that I purchased from Charo, and will be for sale.

Project Andina buys direct from producers, growers, and artisans to help support communities on a local level, and foster entrepreneurship.

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The Yanesha people are an ethnic group of the Peruvian Amazon Rainforest.  Located in three regions of Peru, with a population of about 7,000.  Their website.

PetroPeru Oil Spill In The Amazon

On 25 January, 2016 a pipeline breach happened due to a landslide. Now a second breach has occurred, and is under investigation. PetroPeru, is responsible for the spill, and will be sanctioned by the Peruvian government, the company may be fined $17M.

The oil spill into the Amazon waterways is affecting over 8,000 people living in the area. Two-hundred and fifty locals are performing the cleanup at this time. Flora and fauna may return in one year after cleanup is complete, environmental experts say.

https://www.facebook.com/MicMedia/videos/1079226065433516/

The TPP: Trans Pacific Partnership

Peru is one of the twelve member nations to be involved with the TPP.  What’s your opinion on the TPP?  How will it affect member nations, and what effects will it have on the people?  Please like, share, and comment below.  Comments are moderated.   The following are PDF files of the TPP, with Peru specific chapters.

XXIV Matsuri AELU 2015 Festival

Yookoso, Bienvenido, Welcome.

This year I attended the 24th annual Matsuri AELU. Matsuri means “Local Festival” in Japanese, and nearly every shrine celebrates its own Matsuri. According to AELU (Asociacion Estadio La Union – Association Union Stadium) land for the club was purchased sometime after WWII, and a community effort ensued for several years to clear the land and build the club. The Japanese colony in Peru began arriving as early as 1800 for various reasons.

During the festival, many different musical talents took to the stage, Karate, Judo, Aikido exhibition, raffles from Air Canada and Delta Airlines for a Lima-Tokyo-Lima flight. Also, an anime orchestra concert, a procession that is an important element of Japanese festivals, in which the local Shrine’s kami (Shinto deity) is carried through the town in mikoshi (a divine palanquins, or portable Shinto shrine). It is the only time of the year when the kami leaves the shrine to be carried around town.

Following the procession, Sake for everyone was passed around. Then the artistic shows began with a traditional dance and eight other dance acts, a special Musical Okinawense and followed up with the grand finale of fireworks. Here are some of the pictures and video, from the event.

 

Click on Pictures to Enlarge:

TDS Bottled Water Test

WHAT IS THE BEST BOTTLED WATER IN PERU FOR YOUR $?

In Peru, the expensive bottled water shipped halfway around the world can be found in the big chain grocery stores. Water like Fiji, and Evian for around $5.00 a bottle.  In this test, I used the most common bottled water found in Peru, where 99% of the locals shop in the markets, mom and pop bodega’s, and roadside stands.

The results from the (TDS) Total Dissolved Solids test are as follows:

  • Agua del Grifo (Tap Water): 278
  • Cielo: 257
  • Vida:371
  • San Mateo: 352
  • San Luis: 041    

What is TDS?

Total Dissolved Solids can be heavy metals such as, lead, copper, mercury, arsenic, and cadmium.  It can also be salts in the form of potassium, calcium, sodium, and magnesium.  It is measured in PPM or Parts Per Million.